➜ 223% more user retention compared to paid traffic
➜ 168% better conversions than paid traffic
➜ Consistently rank #1 on Google within days instead of months
➜ Organic traffic showed 517% more engagement
The client is a B2B enterprise SaaS logistics intelligence platform that helps supply chains reduce their shipping costs through increased visibility of operations across verticals.
Amidst a sea of competitors, the customer was looking to position as a competitive logistics intelligence platform, increase their brand awareness by ranking on Google, drive more targeted traffic and bring more MQLs organically.
Goals and KPIs
Drive targeted organic traffic and increase brand awareness ✔
Increase user retention on the website ✔
Improve overall brand engagement ✔
Results With Proof Of Data
261% Growth in organic traffic within 3 quarters
223% more user retention compared to paid ads
517% increase in brand engagement
Organic traffic converted 168% better than paid traffic
234.27% growth in organic traffic in 6 months
Organic traffic in Feb, 2021 was just 2,614.
Organic traffic in October increased to 6,124.
That’s 234.27% increase in organic leads within 6 months.
Organic traffic converted 168% better than paid traffic
Organic traffic = 19,220 The number of pageviews from organic users = 44,002
Average pageviews per organic user = (44,002 / 19,220) = 2.29
Average pageviews per organic user is 2.29
Paid traffic = 81,533
The number of pageviews from paid traffic = 1,11,366
Average pageviews per paid user = (1,11,366 / 81,533) = 1.36
Average page views per paid user is 1.36
Conversion Performance of Organic Traffic Vs. Paid traffic = 1.683
Result: Organic traffic converted 168% better than paid traffic. Implies that organic content is more targeted and speaks to the user, and therefore, they stay 168% more engaged with the content than paid traffic.
Created one of the top-performing landing pages with the longest daily average dwell time
6.32% reduction in bounce rate equating to more user engagement than before
517% more engagement from organic traffic compared to paid traffic
Average session duration of organic traffic = 1:27 minutes
avg session duration of paid traffic = 0:17 minutes
Engagement = (Avg session duration of organic traffic / Avg session duration of paid traffic)
Engagement = 1:27 / 0:17
[1:27 minutes translates to 1.45 minutes, 0:17 minutes translates to 0.28 minutes]
Engagement = 1.45/0.28 = 5.17
Engagement % = 517%
Result: Engagement from organic traffic is 517% more compared to paid traffic
Organic traffic also had 261% more returning visitors than paid traffic
223% more user retention compared to paid traffic
By the time we reached the last quarter, visitor retention through organic traffic was 223% more than retention through paid traffic.
Ranks #1 on Google even after 18 months from the date of publishing beating FedEx on its own keyword
Ranked #1 on Google **consistently** within 5 days of publishing instead of waiting for months
Rank #1 on Google within 5 days for 44 keywords
The 10-Step Repeatable Process to Rank #1 on Google *Consistently* and stay there
How did we achieve that?
80% of the blogs I wrote either ranked #1 on Google or on the first page of Google. This led to 3 things:
Increased brand awareness
We don’t just take the top spots on text SERPs, we also own it on Google Images
Process: Spot on on-page SEO does the trick
So what? Benefits of image SEO
Increase brand awareness + increase engagement If you’re looking to drive targeted traffic, increase MQLs, and increase your user engagement with product messaging and SEO content marketing, head over to[email protected]
Pre-script: I’m chopping off the lengthy introduction and heading straight to deliver what you’re here for.
Here’s the list of the most important copyediting tips you can use right away. Let’s go.
1. Avoid structural confusion
2. Focus on the main goal
3. Use shorter sentences
4. Skip everything the reader skips
5. Too many commas confuse the heck out of the reader
6. Throw your reader right into the story without wasting time
7. Always question the benefit of your sentence
8. Pick a lane
9. Use these 24 connectors to make a smooth landing
10. Cut complexity – innocent example included
11. Format your writing for UX
12. Back up your claims
13. Don’t copywrite
1. Avoid structural confusion – Stop using passive voice
What’s wrong with passive voice?
Passive voice makes your writing dull and heavy.
It makes it hard to understand by delaying the delivery of the message.
Look at this example:
Passive voice doesn’t convey the message until the very end.
Let’s look at another example.
The above sentence has too many things going on. It sounds complicated.
Converting the sentence into an active voice paints the picture faster because there is less uncertainty in the language.
In addition to that, using words like “some” makes the human brain struggle to choose. Especially if you understand visually.
Well, passive voice has its right time and place.
Passive voice is used to place attention on the object or activity instead of the subject.
Sometimes, you use passive voice in direct communication to eliminate blame, to not offend people at the workplace, or to give feedback.
Simply put, passive voice is used to convey ‘the what’ instead of ‘the who’
Passive voice can be powerful too!
Here’s an opinion example I totally agree with
2. Focus on the topic’s ONE main goal
The content you write should be 3 things:
Look at the below example. This is a content email sent by a calendar app.
This email sounds complicated to an average person and rightly so.
Their target audience is normal people who just want to use a calendar scheduling app to book calls.
And if you send emails like this – with irrelevant, jargon-filled sentences, users give up. They unsubscribe.
Don’t make your messaging shoot up your SaaS users’ tech-anxiety.
Keep it simple. Focus on the one thing you want your users to do.
3. Use shorter sentences
The next time you’re struggling to write something, pause.
Take that one complicated sentence that’s hindering you from moving forward and break it into core ideas. Now rewrite the lengthy sentence into multiple core ideas. This makes yoru writing easy, AND delivers a clear message – faster.
For example, go through the below paragraph.
Take the underlined sentence in the picture above and feed it into the Hemingway app.
The above sentence is obscure and hard to read.
Let’s break it down and rewrite it to make the message clear.
Breaking down a sentence into multiple sentences makes the message:
Easy to understand
Easy to write
Sentences that convey one idea are called kernel sentences.
Kernel sentences also make effective value propositions.
I first learned about using kernel sentences inside CopySchool from Joanna Wiebe – the original conversion copywriter.
“Reduce your sentence to one single thought and break it there.” – Joanna Wiebe
4. Skip everything the reader skips
It’s ok to murder your favorite line for the sake of readability.
Most blog intro copy is overkill. If you noticed, I skipped the introduction and jumped straight into the meat and bones of the subject. Now, I don’t guarantee that it works all the time. But it works if you have juicy content from the start.
The No.1 Mistake Most Writers Make With Introductions
Even if you’re writing the intro section for a traditional blog, at least start by NOT repeating what you just said in the title.
Most writers make the mistake of twisting and rewriting their H2s, just to increase their word count. Mostly because they don’t know how to write engaging introductions.
How to do content research to make your introductions worth reading?
Start your intros like this:
A. Use a hard-hitting stat to let them know what’s happening in the industry
B. Tell a story – it could be a customer story, a situational story or an industry incident/activity/experiment. If you’re explaining a difficult concept, use analogies and tell stories to help the reader learn faster and remember better.
C. Use a quote from an industry authority or an anecdote to get their attention
D. Ask a question they cannot ignore
E. Share a desirable result that’ll keep them hooked
Example of intro copy that’s poetic, but fails to enchant the readers.
On the other hand, here’s an example of an ultra-specific blog introduction:
5. Too many commas confuse the reader
Anything more than 3 (oxford) commas, is gasping for breath and a recipe for disaster.
If you find a sentence with more than 3 commas, it’s an indication that it’s too much information stuffed into one sentence.
Break it down.
Connect back to the kernel sentence approach to write better.
Look at the example below:
“..regular basis, either daily, weekly, or monthly” – This phrase sounds highly uncertain and unsure. The last thing you want you to do is – to confuse the reader.
6. Throw your reader right into the story without wasting time
In Media Res – means to start in the middle.
This is another copywriting principle I learned from Joanna Wiebe.
Start in the middle to hook their mind to your version.
In Media Res is a copywriting/screenwriting principle used in the very first scene of your favorite shows.
If you’ve binge-watched five full seasons of Money Heist like a maniac, blame the first scene.
The first scene got you hooked. It threw you right into the story and you became a Money Heist maze runner forever.
Let’s look at an example:
This is an email from Samar Owais, one of the best email strategist and copywriter I know.
This is a no-BS email.
No greetings, no lovelies – her emails jump straight to the point and get the job done.
This is just half the email to show you how Samar wastes 0 seconds in conveying the message and getting the audience hooked.
7. Appeal to your reader’s first instinct
By asking “so what”. Let’s see how to do that.
You’ve written something, cool. Now, if the reader asks “so what?”, there HAS to be a benefit to back up your claim. If not, your readers drop out.
Look at this value proposition example:
Value Prop: Digital Assurance is the Bedrock of Digital Transformation
My first instinct after reading this is – I don’t understand what you’re saying. My brain goes digital digital and that’s it. I have to read it multiple times to really comprehend what they’re meaning to say.
To top that, there’s no crosshead copy to support the message and help me understand their purpose.
The value prop ends there –
Without talking about the ‘real’ benefit of digital transformation
Without talking about why the reader should reach out to them
Without talking about why the reader should trust them to digitize their business
Without explain the scale of digitization
There’s no social proof to back up anything this value prop says
With no benefits to back up your claims and no reason to reach out to you, you become any other brand who fades away very quickly from the reader’s memory.
8. Pick a lane
You’ve got to take a stand. Your copy should convey ONE big idea to the ONE reader with ONE goal. If you don’t do this, your copy spreads all over the place talking about many random things but actually speaking to no one.
Here you go:
I started this post by saying – 13 Copyediting Tips To Make You A Kickass Copywriter
This one line does 2 things:
Selects the audience – Writers/copywriters/editors have identified themselves with this piece of writing. It’s the first step towards conversion
Gets the reader interested – Because every writer wants to improve their copy chops. That’s their end goal.
Now, why do listicles like this one work? Basic human psychology. It boils down to one basic emotion. You and I (and everyone you know) have lived this emotion. It’s greed. We’re greedy for more. We don’t say no to more. That’s why #buzzfeed listicles go viral in no time.
9. Use connectors to make smooth transitions
Here’s a list of 30 connectors I use to make copywriting transitions look natural and effortless in your copy:
Here’s the thing
Don’t forget to
Before <we do that>/<go ahead>
That’s not it
That’s not all
Let’s look at an example
The thing is
The truth is
But wait, that’s not all
But wait, there’s more
On that note
But, is that even possible?
On the other hand
But how can you achieve it?
But, what’s more important is
While we’re on it
Example: (You see what I did there? I used a connector to make a concept clear by explaining it with an example) The email below sets the mood: Heading to holidays with BFCM
Goal: To get the readers to listen to a podcast episode of Limited Supply
The email copy uses connectors just before he reveals the goal. He does that to reignite the reader’s attention – by connecting two interesting actions. Take a look.
10. Cut complexity
And cut complexity.
The most common mistake 90% of writers make is to paralyze the reader’s already stressed minds with convoluted, complicated sentences.
Unnecessarily lengthy sentences not only make the reader undergo information fatigue, it’s also painful to sit through.It distracts your reader.
Example: How do edit for clarity and brevity?
You see how one single hazy sentence was turned into 3 simple sentences that conveyed one idea – clearly.
11. Format your writing for UX
I cannot stress this enough!
For whatever’s sake! Format your copy for readability, usability and user experience.
Yes user experience is for writers as well. Not just web designers.
You cannot deliver a chunk of sentences and call it a day.
Even if you’ve applied all the copywriting principles and copyediting tips we’ve talked about so far, even if you’re a terrific writer – in the online world – Formatting Matters.
To make lengthy copy legible without overwhelming the reader
To break monotonous patterns
To justify the importance of a point
Just like I did now. I conveyed the above points in a bullet format to help the reader grasp information faster, and remember better.
12. Back up your claims
Before you finalize a sentence, make sure you do enough research to explain what’s going on.
If you’ve made a claim, back it up with ample proof.
Proof could be anything. Stats, facts, survey results, research data, examples, testimonials, excerpts from case studies, screenshots of reviews, proof of concept in the form of infographics, flowcharts, diagrams etc.
HockeyStack does a very good job at highlighting achievements and leveraging social proof.
13. Don’t copywrite – Have a conversation
People want to feel like they matter. Acknowledge it.
Genuinely, address their situation as is.
Without sugarcoating it.
But also without watering it down.
And you’ll have built a following of people who trust you.
Because eventually, it’s the trust that makes someone invest in you.
But how do you do that?
Here are 5 ways to make people feel like they matter:
1. Address “the ONE reader’s” problems in the copy
2. Talk about “the ONE reader’s” primary concerns.
3. Solve “the ONE reader’s” problems in the copy
4. Speak 1:1. Avoid convoluted sentences and go for simple language instead. The point of copywriting is to connect with people and make it easier for them to connect with you. If you make the reader think hard, the reader quits. They don’t owe you one bit, so they quit. That’s why it’s important to write like you’re having a conversation. Even if it’s B2B writing.
5. Don’t “Copywrite”. Have a conversation. Address your reader as “you” in your copy. Give them an experience by making your copy easy to read. Remember, you don’t talk like a bot with your friend. Talk human. Imagine that the person is sitting right in front of you and you’re having a conversation about << the subject>>.
Here’s a sales page I wrote that brought in $61k+ in sales within 3 weeks of launching.
You see the copy flows like you’re having a conversation with someone. This not only makes the reader read until the end and gets hooked to the message, it also converts into a high 5-figure launch.
If you’re looking for product messaging like this, write me an email: [email protected]
When you Google the keyword “benefits of content marketing”, you notice that close to 1.3 billion blogs are fighting for the same keyword.
Visibility, credibility, and conversions – happen in that order in today’s attention economy.
Last year, I helped an LA-based e-commerce brand rank #1 on Google within days for high-competition keywords using the on-page SEO techniques I’m sharing in this blog.
Guess what? One year later, it’s still taking the top spot beating sites like Forbes and Entrepreneur. Even though the founder has stopped publishing new content.
Last month, I helped a logistics intelligence SaaS brand to rank #1 on Google within days instead of months for a popular keyword in the supply chain space beating billion-dollar sites like FedEx and UPS.
This happened within 5 days.
Day 1: The blog goes live
Day 3: The blog appears on the first page of Google
Day 5: The blog ranks #1 on Google
And I get a message like this from the client.
So what’s the secret behind ranking #1 on Google consistently AND staying on top?
Strategy 101: Write for humans first
Optimize for search engines later.
The focus of your content should solely be – usefulness. Never deviate from this principle.
Because chasing search engine algorithms is not a strategy. Frameworks change all the time. Most growth hacks die before the data comes in. Tools like ChatGPT are making educative TOFU content almost redundant. So how do you establish authority, consistently rank #1 on Google, 5x your organic traffic engagement, and freeze your churn? By connecting with the reader, conveying the right message at the right time, and converting them into brand loyalists.
Brand loyalists are people who come back to your brand/content over and over again.
Because they connect with your messaging.
Because they listen to what you have to say.
Because they find spending their precious time on your content worthy and valuable.
Don’t listen to SEO tools like YoastSEO that encourage you to:
Modify your tone because you started 3 consecutive sentences with the same word
Stuff your headings with primary keywords even though it sounds unnatural
Wishy-wash your introduction in a quest to fit in the primary keyword
Inflate your content by suggesting inappropriate keyword density
So what should you do?
Write like you speak, but don’t overdo it. Focus on your narrative
Focus on being helpful to the reader
Focus on guiding the reader to achieve the goal in the headline
Go ahead and pick keywords with low keyword search volume if they bring value to your content
Focus on holding a conversation with your reader
Focus on making a logical argument and building a connection with your reader
Create an SEO Content Strategy for BOFU keywords with navigational content
Because visitors who seek navigational content have high intent of purchase and are conversion-ready.
It also means that your content is in alignment with your visitor’s stage of awareness.
Once you plan and execute your content keeping the above strategy in mind, traffic flow becomes an after-effect of great content.
Now, how do you attract and convert this traffic?
Optimize headlines for SEO and Conversions
80% of your readers don’t read your copy if you can’t get them to read your headlines – David Ogilvy
Most of the content fails to grab the prospect’s attention because the headlines never offer the benefit the prospect is looking for:
Are you helping your audience save time?
Are you helping them bring down operational costs?
Is your solution accessible from anywhere, anytime?
Are you making their life easier?
If you said yes to any of the above, then you’ve got to mention that in your headline.
Treat each of your headlines like mini value prop statements.
The benefits should go straight into your value proposition to get your prospect interested FIRST.
Now, why is something as simple as highlighting benefits a deal-breaker?
Because the emotional benefit IS the real solution your visitors are here for.
So, strap the benefits to your headline.
Pro Tip: Ensure you optimize your title tag with the main focus keyword.
User-led Keyword Research
Google Crawlers are constantly looking for relevant keywords (the keywords you want to rank for) in your content.
The keywords your prospects are searching for.
But how do you predict what they’re searching for?
Lean back on the most recent user-generated content like:
Sales call recordings
Niche Slack Communities
The point is – don’t reinvent the wheel. Don’t second guess your content strategy by relying solely on tools like SEMRush or Ahrefs. Instead, lean on UGC to extract high-converting BOFU content and use these tools to improvise your keyword groupings. Create an SEO content strategy with topic clusters and keyword groupings to boost SEO and conversions.
Rank on Google by making your website accessible to a wider audience
Did you know that 20% of all organic searches are image searches? That’s a solid chunk of lead traffic if you harness it.
One of the Content Primer pages ranks #1 on Google Image Search for a popular keyword organically. You needn’t rely on Facebook ads or Google ads all the time to drive targeted traffic. Simple optimization techniques can help you achieve this with ease without inflating your marketing budget. Let’s find out how.
Alt text is the communication channel between your website and search engine spiders that help you rank. Alt text is also the communication channel that makes your content more accessible to a wide range of users including the ones who use accessibility tools like text-to-speech converters etc.
5 Strategies to optimize your images for Google
Use descriptive file names and alt text For example, the file name of one of the ranking images is “Empathetic-Copywriting-Content-Primer.png”
The file name here is the keyword we’re aiming for and the brand name.
Keep your file names and alt text brief but clear
The alt-text description here is pretty much the title of the blog. This implies that you should treat your alt text as mini value prop statements. Explain what the image signifies, for whom and what’s the benefit of following along.
Avoid generic file names like picture.jpg, image2.png, etc.
Avoid lengthy, full-sentence file names
Avoid stuffing keywords in alt text and file names
Avoid using only image links for your site’s navigation
Use standard image formats like JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, and WebP image formats
Make your images mobile-friendly as 60.9% of all website traffic comes from mobile devices
How descriptive alt text and captions help rank #1 on Google:
It indicates the purpose of the image and relays the exact content of the image
Increases relevance to the content and brings clarity
Specific information increases the chances of matching with the search keywords and bumps your page to the top
Tip: Run an instant SEO Audit of missing alt text images on your website now for FREE.
How to beat billion-dollar sites and rank on Google
One of the easiest ways to outdo giant websites on their own keywords is to:
Create meaningful, helpful, read-worthy content
Create useful, illustrative image content that cuts down the learning time for the reader
Let’s look at an example.
We were able to beat billion-dollar sites like FedEx and UPS on their own keywords and rank within days.
The blog takes the top spot on Google SERPs and is ranking for 44 keywords.
The target keyword is “fedex service guarantees”. My client’s blog was on the top spot for close to 18 months. It’s taking the 5th spot currently.
Write for the most distracted reader to arrive at interesting content
Humans are wired to react to interruptions.
The reason why mobile phone notifications are so easy to give into.
So how do you make your reader stay focused?
By using Pattern Interrupt Techniques.
Pattern interrupt is a psychological approach to shifting your reader’s focus and influence their behavior.
How can you use this psychological phenomenon to keep your readers interested in your content?
Create Disruptive Content Without Switching Context
Influence your reader before a notification takes that power away from your content. Make your content MORE interesting than their distractions – By dividing and displaying content differently. This is how:
Ensure the headings carry appropriate H1, H2, H3 tags
Use graphs and visual charts to make information more memorable
Use screenshots to offer proof and explanation then and there
Use snappy gifs to make content memorable
Use bullets instead of a clunky text box
Highlight to bring the focus back – bold, italics, underline, color
Use images to explain instead of a long boring paragraph
Use content highlighters like colored blocks
Create carousel content to keep your audience hooked
GIFs when used appropriately can pattern interrupt and make your content more interactive
User Experience and User Retention
The fundamentals of creating content for your audience is to be helpful.
Anchor text is the tool that makes the interwebs so powerful. It makes access to relevant information easy in just one click.
Linking to related topics in your content creates a content repository your audience comes back to for their other information needs.
To get anchor texts right, every time you create anchor text, connect back to the primary intent –
Can this link introduce my readers to topics they need to know?
Can this link open up new channels and learning experiences for my readers?
Is this link connecting to a pre-requisite topic that’ll bring them closer to their desired outcome?
On the downside, too many external hyperlinks may take your audience away from your website. So, make sure that you’re bringing a balance.
Never hyperlink your anchor text to your competitor's websites.
Overdoing hyperlinks can also result in penalties by Google.
Summary: 6 easy steps to SEO Content to increase conversions
What’s the point of having a website when nobody scrolls past your hero image?
If your value proposition doesn’t catch your prospect’s attention and fails to lead them past the following copy, you’re losing business faster than a descending aircraft.
Your homepage is the most important real estate online. And a bad homepage can tarnish your reputation.
Homepage copy should highlight the benefits your reader can reap out of working with you. It should talk about how you’re capable of pulling them out of their current situation and building a bridge that enables them to move closer to their goals.
Use these simple homepage copywriting techniques to empathize with your audience:
Replace “I”, “We”, “Our”, “Ours” with “You”, “Your” and “Yours” to make your copy appealing to your prospects instead of tooting your own horn. Let the message on your website invite them already. Show them you’re here..solely..to serve them. Prove it to them that they are your priority and you’re nothing short of value.
Make sure you state what you do – loud and clear. You could be a startup owner, creative entrepreneur, agency owner or an angel investor – whoever you are – Say it. Declare it. Announce it. But do it in a way that highlights the one biggest benefit you offer, the one big problem you solve for your prospects.
Highlight the outcome of your product or service. You are in business for a reason. You work hard for that one purpose – to help your clients. But a majority of the homepage copy found online barely scratch the surface of communicative marketing.
Explain the outcome and let the message sink in. Let them relate, imagine, desire and own the outcome. Then, they’re ready to buy.
Offer an incentive. A homepage without an incentive is a waste of your online real estate. You are letting your hot leads slip away in a snap instead of catalyzing the opportunity to bring them closer to your brand.
Show them what it’s like to work with you. Let them taste your work. At first, give immense value. And then give some more. This goes without saying.
Include conversion metrics in your testimonials, include real stats from real people and bring the number game on. This makes your prospects trust you more. It’s like feeling safe to get treated by the same doctor who treated your uncle earlier rather than landing up in a certain Dr. Strange’s office. It’s pure human psychology at work.
Optimizing your homepage is easy. You just have to make sure you’re checking the above list.
Do that in an easy to understand manner without distracting or boring the reader
Keep the reader reading until the end
Also, your writing shouldn’t jeopardise the quality of the subject by:
Insulting a reader’s intellect and analytical capacities
Underestimating a reader’s breadth of knowledge
Assuming that the reader knows what you’re talking about
Writing with clarity is all about designing your idea to be simple, comprehensible, and memorable.
Today, you’ll learn:
The exact process to attain clarity before you start writing
Exercises to strengthen your message
How to play with adverbs to make your writing more powerful
What’s the one thing you need to write with clarity
Your ability to break an idea into simpler sub-ideas to help the reader absorb information easily – is writing with clarity. It’s having to anatomize your thought.
To write clearly, your mind should watch your thoughts slow down, sit and settle. It’s like snorkeling. Too many suspended particles affect your visibility. So you wait for the water to settle down. Likewise, to write with clarity, you should wait, think and understand clearly.
Understanding an idea happens in 3 stages:
Acknowledgment – Introspecting your idea and taking the liberty to understand what happens when you agree/disagree with it.
Organization – Logical structuring of your ideas with the help of a clear goal and outline to steer your writing.
Mapping – Drawing relevance. This is where all the connection happens. The place where you say – “Makes sense!” Example: Connecting the subheadings to the main idea so that you don’t deviate from the subject and stay focused.
Without the above steps, it becomes impossible to bring your ideas to life.
If you follow the above process, you can bring clarity to your writing — one sentence at a time.
6 Tips strengthen your message
Use power words that evoke a feeling, emotion or stimulate a response
Kill your favorite sentence mercilessly if you think it confuses your reader
Eliminate filler words
Carry out several rounds of edits to make sure your writing is clear, has a flow, and gets to the point quickly
Replace big words with simple, smaller, and unambiguous words.
Replace adverbs with stronger, better verbs.
How to use adverbs smartly
If you are using an adverb, you have got the verb wrong. – Kingsley Amis
Adverbs weaken your writing by sucking the energy out of a phrase. Adverbs make your writing bleak and powerless which can bore your reader.
But how do you avoid using adverbs? By replacing (adverb + verb) with a better verb.
She sighed irritatingly in pain and despair.
She groaned in pain and despair.
What sounds better to you?
In the second example, the better verb has a stronger effect because that word was created with just one purpose – evoke the emotion it evokes. Also, it just sounds good. And writing well is also about sounding good.
But there are times when adverbs are a must to set the context. Sometimes, you’ve got to describe your verb more accurately to narrate the situation. And these are the only times you should pledge to use adverbs to make your writing stronger – to read your emotion.
The company urged the employees to avoid misusing the resources.
This sentence implies that the employees are/were/could be irresponsible in using the resources and hence the company issued a notice.
The company urged the employees to use the resources sparingly.
The above sentence sets the context. Why did they mention sparingly? Is the company running losses? Are they running out of resources? Is replenishing their resources becoming a big problem? The readers put on their thinking caps instantly and that’s exactly what you want as a writer.
You see – one adverb could imply so much more meaning when used smartly. So, choose your adverbs wisely.
When your message is clear, you naturally attract followers who’re eager to hear and learn from you. They listen to you and you matter to them. This is how you build authority with clear messaging.
Questions on clear messaging? Let’s figure it out in the comments!
If it’s a physical product, they want to know exactly what it’s made of.
If it’s a service, they want to know what they get.
If it’s a solution, they want to know how it works.
Once they know the details, they’re ten times more likely to buy from you.
Now, why does this work?
The ever-curious human mind stops releasing the stress hormone, cortisol, the moment it understands that you are in a familiar environment.
By giving out the exact details of working with you, you’re creating a safe, future environment for the reader by telling the reader’s brain that:
You’re in a safe, familiar environment
You’re with someone who knows how you feel and empathizes with you
You can stop being in the fight-or-flight mode
Marketing is about understanding your audience, empathizing with them and inviting them to know more about your offer – nothing more, nothing less.
You’re here to talk about how you can free your audience from that big fat suffering that’s been hindering their growth and transformation.
How to keep your audience thinking about what you said
The reason you remember the story from the movie you watched when you were 10 but not the history lesson is because you mirrored and experienced the emotions played in the movie.
How you can use this technique to win your audience over:
Pinpoint your audience’s exact pain points and address that in your copy
Identify with their fears and anxieties and acknowledge that in your copy
Promise the desired outcome (and deliver it in your product please)
What not to do in your copy
Okay, if you don’t keep the conversation going between you and your reader, the connection dies.
So, make your reader feel heard, understood and important.
This is how you roll:
It is when you DON’T make them feel zoned out – they start relating to you.
It is when you DON’T make them feel like a faceless speck from the masses – they start valuing you.
It is when you make them feel understood – the chemistry of liking strikes.
So it all boils down to understanding your reader. Inside out.
When you synthesize your audience’s thoughts that they find difficult to express, you win their trust.
When your audience feelunderstood, they take the first step toward trusting you and believing in what you have to say. This tells them that you know where they’re coming from – a point of stress and struggle – a point that YOU have surpassed – a point in place they want to be
How to develop a memorable voice and brand personality through copywriting
Now that you know what to say, let’s focus on how you say it.
Your voice is nothing but your thought process – how you identify what to say and when.
Your tone is the language and mood and feelings you use to convey the message.
I’ve always loved Mailchimp copy. And you know what makes readers love Mailchimp? The tone. It’s easy, flowy and minimalistic. Notice the adjectives I used to describe the tone? That’s how you develop a personality around your brand.
Look at this example here.
The above form makes it want to sign up and see how easy it can actually be to get started with a Mailchimp account. You too, right?
That’s the magic of having a distinct voice and tone. People actually listen to you speak.
You too can develop a tone. Let’s run through these examples quickly to find out how.
1. People are addicted to cell phones.
2. Smart screen toxicity is harming youngsters.
What sounds more vivid and powerful to you? 1 or 2?
The first statement is normal that uses everyday words.
But the second one? It’s exactly pointing out who it’s harming the most – the youngsters. What is harming? – Smart Screen Toxicity. It’s done in an unconventional manner – yet without using any jargons that a layman wouldn’t understand. That’s how you develop a voice.
How not to sound in your copy
Let’s get straight to the point.
Don’t sound like you and your competitor are cut from the same cloth
Be different but never be inappropriate
Think aloud, but don’t harm
Don’t force/coax/pressurize/confuse your readers
Don’t limit user personas to a set of demographic data but also care about your audience’s tastes, traits, and behavior in as much.
Don’t talk. Make a statement.
Okay, these are the 6 big tips to follow every time you start with a copywriting project.
To practice, today you go back and pick a page of copy.
Rewrite the page by applying the tips and techniques you read just now and tell me how you feel about it at the end of the exercise 🙂
Your prime offer isn’t selling because you’re not communicating your brilliance.
How do you describe what you do in one powerful sentence?
It so happens sometimes – you either narrate a boringly lengthy story or you go blank, right?
Don’t worry. It has happened to the best of us.
This happens when you haven’t delved enough to understand your brand.
Hang on and you’ll learn how to dissect your brand and come up with the core branding statements that help you rise above the noise and command premium prices.
How to write your USP
The purpose of your messaging strategy is to help you be differentiable so that your prospects pick you over your competition.
Many business owners find it difficult to come up with a compelling USP. This happens because they’re busy joining the race. They want to do what their competitors are doing instead of identifying their unique angle.
What is your unique angle?
You can identify your unique angle when you accept your strengths and weaknesses wholeheartedly and build from there.
What it means is, elevate your strengths and complement your weaknesses to build a powerful brand.
For example, if you’re good at strategizing growth but have no idea how to create content, you should focus on strategizing growth and let someone else take care of content.
The goal is to become extremely and especially good at the ONE thing you love to do. That is your unique angle.
Now take your unique angle and create your USP.
The purpose of your USP is to build a reputation for your brand or reinforce your preexisting brand reputation.
The formula to writing your USP
Your USP describes the purpose, goals, and benefits of working with your company.
Your USP = Who you are + What you do + For whom + Why it is beneficial + How you do it
Let me dissect my own USP.
I’m a copywriter and brand strategist for thriving businesses looking to amplify their influence by expressing their innovativeness.
Who you are + What you do = I’m a copywriter and brand strategist
For whom = For thriving businesses
Benefits = Amplify your influence
How you do it = By expressing your innovativeness
Your turn. Write down your USP with the above formula.
Let’s move on to writing your mission statement.
How to write your mission statement
Your mission statement describes how you put your USP into action. How you differentiate your work from the others. What is the core function that makes your business what it is, what is it that you actually do? Describe this in one sentence.
Let’s take Content Primer’s mission statement as an example.
Our mission is to help businesses/organizations communicate their ideas + express their innovativeness without the stress and struggle.
Don’t overthink this one. Because your mission is the very reason you started your business. It’s your primary purpose. Write it down.
How to write your vision statement
How is your vision statement different from your mission statement?
Your mission is – what you do.
Your vision is – why you do what you do.
Your vision statement talks about your aspirations whereas your mission statement specifies what you do in the present and how you do it.
Your vision statement tells the reader WHERE you want to be, what inspired the founding of your company, and what’s the idea that sparked the realization and growth of your brand. Write it one sentence.
Content Primer’s vision is to connect like-minded entrepreneurs who bring about their developmental ideas together to improvise world affairs.
Your turn. Write down your vision statement keeping your company’s place in the future in mind.
How to beat your competition – Carve your identity
When you compete based on the value you are providing to your client/customer, price becomes irrelevant. At this point, you may not believe it because money is everything, right?
I’ll tell you how and why you with a well-known example.
You subscribe for Amazon Kindle membership even though you barely read a book.
It’s all about the offer being presented.
Tell me this.
What is more valuable?
You get to read unlimited books for $10/month
Buy a book for $5 each
What is more valuable? Obviously the first option right? If you’re a bookworm who gulps in 2 books per week, the first offer is a steal deal. Even if you want to read just three books per month, the offer is a no-brainer and your natural instinct is to go subscribe.
Got my point?
Now, did you see how price became irrelevant? You chose the more valuable offer even though the unlimited subscription model is priced at thrice the average price. This is when price becomes just a number.
Increase the value of your package to create a juicy offer that sells itself.
Creating irresistible offers that bundle up relevant products/services is a great way to differentiate yourself from the competition.
What’s one thing you bought because the offer was too good to be ignored? tell me in the comments. even better if you can share the link for the offer. If you need further help crafting the core statements that define your company’s identity, we’re happy to help you.
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